How You Too Can Travel Well
FAQs, News & Views - Analysis of planes & trains, destinations & accommodations, so you can enjoy your journey in style.
FAQs, News & Views - Analysis of planes & trains, destinations & accommodations, so you can enjoy your journey in style.
Cathay Pacific recently announced that it will integrate its Asia Miles program (used for award flights) with its Marco Polo Club
program (broader rewards and tier benefits). Over the coming months, Cathay Pacific will be rolling out a range of new offers –
and these will culminate in a refreshed program ("Cathay") in the first half of 2022.
We will provide more details as they are released, but for comparison follow the link to see an infographic summarising the Cathay Pacific programs as at June 2021.
In its most recent annual report on the most valuable and strongest hotel brands, BrandDirectory found Taj Hotels to
be the strongest hotel brand for 2021.
According to the report, Taj is renowned for its world-class customer service and the luxury hotel chain scores very well for consideration, familiarity, recommendation, and reputation especially across its home market of India.
This provides a huge vote of confidence for travellers.
Today, as part of the launch of its "Department of Epic" program, IHG Hotels & Resorts announced a contest that will give one
lucky US-based traveller
the chance to win back a year of missed adventures with 365 days worth of epic hotel experiences at various IHG locations around the world,
including InterContinental, Kimpton and Holiday Inn Express.
Pictured above is the InterContinental Bora Bora resort and Thalasso Spa - just one of many possibilities.
Read on for more details and how to enter.
Virgin Australia will join Qantas in offering free flights as an incentive for Australians to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Under the airline’s VA-X & Win promotion, there'll be one major prize of 1 million Velocity Frequent Flyer points, "dozens of free business class flights" as well as a range of other prizes.
The competition will launch later this year, once all Australian adults are expected to be eligible for the vaccine. You need to register to enter the Virgin Australia VA-X & Win Competition.
A separate competition will be launched for team members, with prizes including additional annual leave, Lounge memberships, and free business class flights.
For travellers with young families wanting to book a holiday, Hilton has launched a new family-friendly booking feature.
Confirmed Connecting Rooms will enable individuals to easily book and instantly confirm at least two connecting rooms (at participating hotels, which I expect will increase as the technology is rolled-out). This will reduce the potential stress both at the time of booking adn during your stay, as anyone who has holidayed with particularly a younger family will appreciate.
While I see it as ideal for young families, it is also a boon for other multi-generational holidays, friend groups, wedding attendees and other travel parties who wish to stay near one another rather than potentially be spread across multiple floors.
In the past there have always been many benefits to staying in connecting guest rooms—but the booking process wasn’t always seamless.
Hilton seems to have overcome this with a smart, easy-to-use solution. Hopefully others will follow Hilton's lead.
For more details, or to make a booking at participating hotels with Hilton Confirmed Connecting Rooms, use the link below.
Marriott Bonvoy has an Earn, Eat, Enjoy promotion to 'Holiday Here This Year' for Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Samoa. Book
now using the Promotional Code: B1818 and for stays completed by 31 December 2021, you receive:
* 2X Marriott Bonvoy points;
* breakfast for 2 adults and 2 children (up to age 12);
* daily hotel credit to use at restaurants & bars.
You can see the T&C's or make bookings using the link below.
Alaska and Qatar code-sharing
Alaska Airlines and Qatar Airlines have applied to codeshare on a number of routes operating in the Americas. Under the proposal, most routes are out of Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles with direct flights from Doha into those 3 "hub" cities.. The code-sharing opens up routes for Qatar into Mexico and Hawaii. For Alaska Airlines, it demonstrates its commitment as a new member of the OneWorld alliance and also provides a handy feeder into its US network. For more details, use the link below.
Qatar offer discount to Alaska MP members
Qatar Airways has launched a new coupon discount offer for Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan members. You must book prior to 11 July 2021 and travel is to be completed by 11 July 2022. You can save $63 to $550 on ex-US itineraries depending on the class of service and whether a one-way or return.
Alaska Airlines is adjusting its partnerships as part of its intergration into the OneWorld Alliance. As part of that, Alaska
Airlines will cease its partnership with Emirates on July 31, 2021.
Through 31 July 2021, MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K members flying on Emirates on a paid ticket, no matter the class, will receive lounge access at the Emirates Business Class flagship lounge in Dubai International Airport (DXB).
There remains a small window of opportunity. Award redemptions on Emirates are available through July 31, 2021. For future travel, changes made to a booked award on Emirates on or after August 1, 2021, will require cancellation of the award and re-booking on a different Alaska Airlines partner.
Perhaps unsurprisingly given it is another OneWorld member, award bookings for Qatar will become available in August 2021.
Velocity has welcomed 7-Eleven as a new partner. Velocity members will now be able to earn points when purchasing fuel or convenience
items at any of the 700+ convenience stores located around Australia.
This will provide an easy way for Velocity's 10 million members to boost their points balance, in anticipation of when we can more easily take to the skies again.
Velocity members will earn:
Qantas announced plans on May 31st to giveaway a suite of mega prizes to Australians who get the COVID-19 vaccine, including unlimited
travel for a year. This is in addition to the announcement a week earlier that it would offer frequent flyer points along with travel
vouchers and status credits to Australians who get inoculated. It is understood the options being considered by Qantas include
giving people who get both their two COVID-19 jabs up to 1000 frequent flyer points, flight vouchers towards domestic and international
flights, and status credits, which allow people to move into high Frequent Flyer tiers.
Any reward would be available to people who had already received their jabs and the program would run until the end of 2021 when the vaccine rollout is due to be completed; the details are yet to be completed. Now, the national carrier has launched a further incentive scheme which it hopes will boost vaccination rates and help get state and international borders reopened permanently.
“We’re looking at having 10 mega-prizes, at least one for each state or territory, where a family of four can have unlimited free travel for a year on the Qantas and Jetstar networks,” CEO Alan Joyce revealed on Channel 7’s Sunrise program.
The trips would be in economy class and each of the ten winners. “In addition to that, the Accor Group have come on board and they’re offering one million Accor Points, which gives free accommodation at 400 hotels and resorts across the country.”
Joyce said the program would launch in July, "will include anybody that has already been vaccinated (and) will apply to anybody that's vaccinated through to the end of 2021."
“We have a vested interest in this, we want to do everything we can to ensure the borders domestically open and stay open and that we get international up and running,” he explained.
The airline has consistently said that it will require all passengers to be vaccinated when it restarts international flights beyond New Zealand.
More Australians vaccinated means more potential travellers making bookings.
While the moves may not be entirely altruistic, I think both companies are to be commended for “putting their money where their mouth is” and not just relying on Government to provide support for the ailing sector.
It’s understood that vaccinated Australians will be able to claim their rewards and enter to win a mega-prize through the Qantas app from July.
Don’t be surprised to see if this coincides with the launch of the Qantas/Accor dual points earning (crossover) capability that was announced in November 2020 as part of a closer strategic relationship between the companies. This too was scheduled to launch mid-2021 and will be the first partnership of its kind between an airline and hospitality group in the Asia Pacific region.
Gradually travel restrictions are being eased, enabling travel locally, or within defined "travel bubbles". Available at selected locations, Hyatt have curated one-of-a-kind offerings to enjoy during summer stays to unwind, learn and explore while also fostering a genuine connection.
Best Western makes elite status in its Best Western Rewards program easier to attain for 2021. Requirements have been halved for 2021,
so you get there twice as fast!
|New Qualifications for 2021*|
Happy New Year !
last year was a tough one globally with the health and wellbeing of thousands of people impacted. Our thoughts are with those who have had family and friends touched by this pandemic and also to the front-line healthcare workers who are tirelessly working to keep people safe. Without you/them our lives would be so much worse.
New Years is a time of reflection for me. Personally and work-wise.
My initial thoughts for pointsNplaces over for the next 12 months are to post more points program guides (including some very good smaller programs that don't receive the coverage they deserve), more ideas on enhancing your use of points and (as more freedom and opportunities start to be available) destinations.
I am also tweaking the layout gradually, so this will evolve over time.
I also intend to start adding Airline program guides. This hasn't been a high priority for last year with the reduced travel due to lockdowns around the world.
I am also contemplating a list of destinations to see and plan for in anticipation of travel restrictions being eased during 2021. Both short-term and perhaps a "bucket list" too.
But I would also like to know your thoughts.
Are there any items you'd like to see new articles for? Even if combining existing content - comparisons of programs for example.
I am open to all ideas that you will find interesting and relevant.
If you would like to make any suggestions/requests (all appreciated), please drop us an email using the "contact us" page.
Best wishes for a happy 2021 and safe travels, no matter how near or far.
SLH is one of our favoured programs and for a short time, you can save up to 40% at 100 SLH destinations! Get some sun on your bones
at Viceroy Bali, Huvafen Fushi in the Maldives, Aleenta or Keemala resorts in Phuket, La Casa Que Canta in Mexico or the Heritage Le Telfair Golf and Wellness resort in Mauritius (pictured above, sourced from Leonardo Worldwide Corporation) .
Perhaps a stay in a location that has an interesting history in itself, like either the luxurious Fortress Resort and Spa in Sri Lanka or the Tom Tom Suites at the Old Franciscan House in Istanbul.
For fans of snowsports, there are options like the Kristiana, Lech in Austria.
So, you're bound to find something that will be a memorable stay.
Act soon to ensure that you don't miss out. Note that you must book by 3 January 2021 for stays until the end of June 2021. Other Terms and Conditions apply, so be sure to read them on the page that this article links to.
Get twice as many HIlton Honors points when you buy or gift at least 10,000 points before 31 December 2020. That's a whopping 50% discount
The annual limit on the number of points you can purchase has been temporarily increased to 160,000 - and the bonus points don't count towards this limit.
This brings the purchase price down to USD 5 per thousand. What could you do with this? Read on to learn more.
Get 50% more Marriott Bonvoy points when you buy or gift at least 2,000 points before 22 December 2020. That's a 33% discount !
The annual limit on the number of points you can purchase has been temporarily increased to 150,000 - and the bonus points don't count towards this limit.
This brings the purchase price down to USD 8.33 per thousand. What could you do with this? Read on to learn more.